Runway Representation: Dual Modeling
Living in New York, we have a front row seat at the runway shows that are hosted by pedestrians on the city streets and by couturiers in chic warehouses. When we watch the year round runway shows that happen from Queens to Brooklyn to Soho, we see a clear diversity that makes New York such an attractive place to be. Different body types and skin stones strut the concrete jungle catwalk. However, it’s the organized U.S. runway shows hosted for those deemed “worthy” twice a year that we need to speak about.
It’s no secret that the runway shows we grew up watching on TV weren’t the most inclusive. However, there has been some progress made. Plus-size models have represented legacy labels and more ethnicities have been casted in mainstream shows. However, at the most recent NYFW, PrettyLittleThing’s collab with Saweetie changed the game by introducing dual modeling. Dual modeling is the idea that each item of clothing presented in a line/show is to be modeled by two models of different body types.
Often, when we think about body representation in runway shows, we think of plus size models sandwiched between slim models. We rarely see them walk the shows side my side. Even more so, we rarely see them modeling the same clothes. PrettyLittleThing x Saweetie, on the other hand allowed two models of different sizes to walk the show side by side in the same outfits for multiple looks. Although the models weren’t always wearing the same outfits most of the looks were modeled twice by two different body types.
Why is this so groundbreaking? Well, have you ever gone online and found an item of clothing you absolutely love? You purchase the item, and you’re so excited to receive it that you stare at the tracking number for days to watch the progress of the item be shipped from warehouse to postal system to your doorstep. Yet, when you finally get it in the mail and try it on, you look like a sack of potatoes? Me. Too.
As consumers in this new age of technology, we are constantly browsing online for our next outfit. We’re all online shopping, but we’re not all the same size. When there’s only one model of a certain size modeling the item of clothing we all want to purchase, how can we be sure that the clothes are going to look as good on us as it does on the model? PrettyLittleThing x Saweetie made sure that we would know how the clothes fit on different body types. This should be the norm.
We look to runway shows to find out what’s to come for us in fashion. What are we going to love next? What’s the trend going to be? Designers use these shows to market straight to us. However, many haven’t put two and two together to realize that “us” is made up of people who are more than one size.
That being said, I do give credit to the past NYFW that increased runway representation. Savage x Fenty, Chromat, and Prabal Gurung pushed boundaries this season, but PrettyLittleThing x Saweetie was able to set the bar even higher for the upcoming fashion weeks. I’m already excited for next season!
Watch the full PrettyLittleThing x Saweetie show HERE.